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Nigeria Facts: 100+ Historical Facts about Nigeria


Table of Contents

No doubt Nigeria is the giant of Africa in all ramifications. Aside from the aspect of crude oil, Nigeria is blessed with so many other resources like Gold, Tin, Coke and fertile lands for agricultural purposes to mention a few.


In this article I’ll be unveiling 100 Interesting historical Nigeria facts, these amazing facts are both useful for kids and anyone that’s curious about the peculiar African country called Nigeria.

1. Sweet Crude Oil

Why is it referred to as sweet crude oil? Let’s start with the definition of Sweet Crude Oil. According to Wikipedia Sweet Crude Oil is a type of petroleum with less than 0.4% of Sulphur, therefore making it of low impurity and high value.

Sweet crude oil consist of little amounts of carbon dioxide and hydrogen Sulphide. Sweet crude oil in particular are commonly used and of high value in the production of gasoline which is of high demand due to it’s low percentage of impurities.

Nigeria is one of the rarest countries that possesses sweet crude oil as many other countries possess crude oil too but with high amount of sulphur (Sour Crude Oil).

2. Over 500 Indigenous languages Spoken

This is extremely amazing as Nigeria possesses over 500 indigenous languages. You might want to say, 500 languages in just one country? Yes, that’s what makes it quite amazing.

Some of the Indigenous languages in Nigeria are :

  • Igbo
  • Yoruba
  • Hausa
  • Ijaw
  • Fulfulde
  • Edo
  • Ibibio
  • Kanuri
  • Tiv
  • Nupe and others to mention a few.

3. Most Populated Country in Africa

No doubt Nigeria is the most populated country in Africa with an estimated population of 200.96 million as at 2019 making Nigerian even rank as number 7th most populated country in the World!

4. The largest City in Africa is located in Nigeria

According to research, the largest city in Africa by population is Lagos which is one of the prominent cities in Nigeria. Population of Lagos currently is estimated to be 21,320,000.

5. The richest man in Africa is a Nigerian

For years now, Aliko Dangote has been the richest man in Africa who is actually from Nigeria in the northern part (Kano). His net worth as at 2021 is estimated to be US$ 10 billion.

6. Nigeria is the 116 most competitive nation in the world

Nigeria is currently ranked as one most competitive country World Wide.

7. 7% of all languages are spoken in Nigeria.

According to research, it has been discovered that Seven percent of the total languages spoken in the world are spoken in Nigeria.

8. According to research, almost half of Nigerians are of Islamic Religion

This might sound weird but it is actually true. Nigeria as a country is mostly filled with Muslims.

9. Nigeria possesses one of the largest movie industries in the world.

Nollywood is a Nigerian movie industry and is ranked as one of the largest movie industries in the world.

10. Oil covers 70% of the country’s export account

About 70% of Nigeria’s export is on oil due to the high quality and demand for the country’s oils. This is as a result of low impurity which has been explained above.

11. Nigeria is the 12th largest producer of crude oil

According to research, Nigeria is the 12th largest producer of crude oil, producing over 2.5 million barrels per day.

12. 70% of Nigerians engage in Agriculture

Approximately 70% of Nigerians work in the agriculture industry and this has been proven.

13. The drill monkey is found only in Nigeria and Cameron

According to research, The drill monkey is native to Nigeria and can only be found in one other country World wide which is Cameron.

14. Nigeria consists of over 3 million facebook users

This is quite amazing. Yes social media is very prominent in Nigeria. Facebook consist of over 3 million Nigerians.

15. It’s population is estimated to hit 444 million by 2050.

Due to the proliferate birth rate in Nigeria, it’s population is estimated to reach 444 million by the year 2050 according to science.

16. Five world richest pastors are Nigerians

Five world richest pastors are Nigerians. Their names are ; Bishop David Oyedepo ($150 Million), Pastor Enoch Adegboye ($55 Million), Pastor Chris Oyakhilome ($50 Million) Pastor T. B. Joshua ($15 million) and Matthew Ashimolowo ($16 million).

17. Africa’s Oldest boat is in Nigeria (Dufana Canoe)

Africa’s oldest boat is in Nigeria and was found in Yobe State. The Dufana Canoe age has been calculated to be over 6,500 years.

18. Lagos City of Nigeria population outnumbers all United States (Eastern part)

Just like you have read above of Lagos’ population. Its population is so high that all eastern United States combined together can’t outnumber the African economic hub.

19. The Yoruba tribe of Nigeria has the highest rate of twin births in the world.

According to research, It is believed that this is made possible due to the tribe high consumption of yams.

20. Nigeria’s GIant of Africa

Nigeria’s nickname “Giant of Africa” is given because of its vast land and diversity of its people.

21. Over 4,700 species of plants grow in Nigeria.

Due to the country’s fertile and vast land. Research has made it known that over 4,700 species of plants grow in Nigeria.

22. The Jos Plateau

The Jos Plateau Indigobird is a bird species that can found in Nigeria and Nigeria only making it so unique.

23. The Niger Delta

The Niger Delta located in Nigeria is the third largest delta in the world. Science has proven that the Niger Delta of Nigeria is the third largest delta in the world.

24. Northern Nigeria

The Northern part of Nigeria covers over 80% of the country’s land.

25. There are few national parks or protected areas in Nigeria.

Due to this, so many of the country’s animals have become extinct or endangered

26. Top Trading Partners

Ivory Coast is Nigeria’s top trading partner in Africa and India in general. (2019)


Anambra waxbill

The Anambra waxbill is a small bird of many beautiful colours. According to research, the Anambra waxbill is found only in Southern Nigeria and nowhere else on earth.

28. Over 250 Ethnic Groups

The country of Nigeria is one among few to possess over 250 ethnic groups.

29. Nigeria derived its name from the longest river in West Africa.

Nigeria derived her name from river Niger which is the longest and largest in Africa. The river is measured to cover 4180km from its source in the Highlands of Guinea.

30. Largest Butterfly diversity in the World

Nigeria is blessed with numerous species of butterflies therefore superseding all countries.

31. Longest Bridge in Africa

Nigeria is the country to have the longest bridge in Africa which is situated in Lagos City. (Third Mainland Bridge)

More Nigeria facts…

32. According to the Census carried out in 2006, Nigerians have been ranked as the highest educated racial nation in America.

33. Mrs. Fumilayo Ransome-Kuti, was among the delegates that negotiated for Nigeria’s independence in Britain.

34. A Travelling Visa was not required to travel to the United Kingdom till 1984.

35. A brand new car cost N2000 (Naira) in Nigeria around the year 1975.

36. The cost of a ticket to London wasn’t up to N100 (Naira) in the year 1975.

37. In 1976, Nigeria’s 60 kobo was equivalent to a US dollar.

38. 1 US dollar was equivalent to Nigeria’s 90 kobos at the beginning of Babangida’s regime in the year 1985. (This was really amazing, lol)

39. According to research, Nigeria is said to have the 4th highest number of poor people.

40. Nigeria is the 3rd biggest economy in Africa ranking 160 out of 177 countries in HDI (Human Development Index).

41. Nigeria possesses the highest-paid lawmakers (legislators) in the whole world.

42. In the year 2013, Nigeria was rated the worst country ever based on welfare and prosperity projection.

43. Kano history has it that a great warrior princess Magajiya Maimuna led her cavalry from Zaria to conquer Kumbwada. (Quite amazing)

44. The capital city of Kanem-Borno, Ngazargamu, was one of the largest cities in 1658 AD; the metropolis housed “about quarter of a million people” and had 660 well planned, wide and unbending streets. (Borno State)

45. The Benin State of Nigeria is known for one of the best artworks such as sculptures, etc.

46. A large part of northern Nigeria was part of the Songhai Empire. Muhammad Kanta underjoined Kebbi and some other states around the year 1512 to 1517.

47. Nigeria has been governed for Thirty years by Christians

48. Under the Presidential system, Nigerians have had 7 years total Northern rule and 11+ years Southern rule.

49. Nigeria’s official language is English due to the British Colony way back.

50. Nigeria has the highest population of blacks in the entire world with over 170 million black people.

51. The world richest black woman is of Nigerian indigene (Folorunso Alakija)

52. Nigeria was colonized by Great Britain before getting its independence on 1st October 1960.

53. Nigeria was crafted when Frederick Lugard became Governor of the region.

54. The Cocoa House in Ibadan was once declared the tallest building in a whole Africa.

55. In terms of size, Nigeria is considered to be the 10th largest country in SubSaharan Africa.

56. Nigeria’s urban population is 18.1% of the total population.

57. Nigeria has more citizens of Islamic religion compared to Saudi Arabia.

58. Africa’s biggest annual gathering of Christians is held in Nigeria. (Redeemed Christian Church of God Holy Ghost Convention)

59. Nigerian immigrants in the United States are one of the most educated.

60. Taraba state of Nigeria speaks more languages than at least 30 countries in the world.

61. Nigeria is a prominent member of the British Commonwealth and the African Union.

62. The National Youth Service Corps of Nigeria began in 1973.

63. The Nigerian National Flag of Nigeria was designed by Taiwo Akinkunmi in the year 1959.

64. About 200 Nollywood Movies are produced every single week.

65. The Yoruba make up to 21% of Nigeria’s population,  the Igbos make  up 18% while the Hausa/Fulanis make up 29% of the country’s population.

66. The state with the highest number of universities in Nigeria is Ogun State with a total number of 9 registered universities.

67. Nigeria has about 152 accredited universities.

68. The most prominent ethnic groups in Nigeria are the Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa.

69. Nigeria was announced as a republic on October 1st, 1963.

70. The walls of Benin are the longest ancient works in the whole world covering 500 communities. It’s distance is measured to be 6500

71. The first-ever building to stand in Nigeria was built in Badagry in 1845.

72. The Ile Ife in Osun State was crafted as early as 1000AD

73. Research has made it known that Nigeria possesses the 10th largest crude oil reserve in the whole world.

74. Professor Wole Soyinka is the first and only Nigerian Nobel Laureate.

75. The first African to ever win the Miss World Beauty Pageant competition was a Nigerian. (Agbani Darego).

76. Nigeria was the first African country to ever win the Gold medal in the Olympics Football Event.

77. Nigerians men are mainly football lovers.

78. The Nigerian Government was converted from parliamentary system to a presidential system of government by the Obasanjo civilian regime.

79. Nigeria’s civil war broke out between July 1967 to January 1970 and lasted for 3 years.

80. The first ever black African to win a gold medal at the Commonwealth games was a Nigerian (Emmanuel Ifeajuna).

81. Nigeria gets over one million applicants to University every single year.

82. 68% of Nigerians are literate.

83. The main rivers in Nigeria river Benue and river Niger.

84. Nigeria is known to be the 12th largest producer of crude oil World Wide among other crude oil producing countries.

85. Petroleum provides 80% of the Nigerian government earning.

86. Nigeria’s capital (Abuja) became the Federal Capital Territory in December 12, 1991.

87. In Nigeria, Lagos is the ranked as the most industrialized state.

88. Nigeria shares border with 4 other African countries which are Niger, Chad, Cameroon and Benin Republic.

89. The most dominant system of transportation in Nigeria is the road transportation system.

90. The life expectancy of Nigerians is estimated to be  about 52.62 years

91. Nigeria was the first African country to clear off the Ebola virus threat in the 2015

92. The highest highlands in Nigeria is Chappal Waddi measuring 7936 feet high.

93. The 2 major rivers of Nigeria (River Benue and river Niger) meet at Lokoja and empty into the Niger Delta.

94. Pidgin English is the most common language in Nigeria.

95. The Name Nigeria was given by Flora Shaw.

96. The official currency of Nigeria is Naira.

97. In Nigeria, the left hand is considered to be used in doing mainly dirty things.

98. Nigeria has 36 States

99. The Portuguese were the first European travellers to visit Benin state of Nigeria in the year 1472.

100. The oldest water works in Africa is found in Nigeria.

At the end, we can really conclude that Nigeria is indeed an amazing country filled lots of resources and riches. From its resources to its amazing population, ethnic groups, numerous languages and lots as listed above.

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